Pakistan can deny all it wants, but there's substantiated evidence that the country is in bed with terrorists. Now, Pakistan's actions suggest the country is no longer trying to deny or even hide its intentions to harbor terrorists and even safeguard them. On Thursday, a Pakistan court ordered the release of Omar Saeed Sheikh and declared that he had no connection in the abduction and brutal murder of American journalist Daniel Pearl.
The Sindh High Court declared the detention orders of one of the three primary accused in the beheading of Pearl as null and void. Furthermore, it even ordered the immediate release of Saeed Sheikh along with three other accused, Fahad Naseem, Sheikh Adil and Salman Saqib.
Who is Omar Saeed Sheikh?
Going back a few years, Omar Saeed Sheikh was one of the terrorists freed by the Indian government in 1999 during the negotiation that led to the exchange of the terrorists for the hijacked Air India flight and its passengers.
Saeed Sheikh has since turned into one of the biggest security threats to India as well as the US, both for his connections inside Pakistan's military and his links inside Al-Qaeda. It was later in 2002 that he made the headlines for beheading the Wall Street Journal reporter, who was investigating ties between ISI and Al-Qaeda.
Sheikh was convicted of helping lure Pearl to a meeting in Karachi, where he was kidnapped. The gruesome video of Pearl's beheading was sent to the US consulate.
Sheikh was born in the UK and a student of London School of Economics. He was arrested in 2002 in Lahore after Pearl's beheading and sentenced to death. However, in April, Sheikh along with three of his aides were exonerated by the Sindh High Court, a move that stunned the world, especially the US and Pearl's family and journalism advocacy groups.
Even though the Sindh HC has ordered the immediate release of Sheikh, the acquittal is being appealed. The Supreme Court is set to hear the appeal on January 5.
"The detention order is struck down," Faisal Siddiqi, the Pearl family lawyer, said, but he remains free until the appeal is completed. He will be returned to prison if the family manages to get the acquittal overthrown in SC.